Date icon29 July 2019

Business CCTV installation

A business CCTV system is a vital component of your organisation’s physical security. Once installed, security cameras become the continuous eyes and ears of your site, there to deter suspicious activity and safeguard important areas, such as entrances, exits and remote locations, day or night.

But what’s involved in getting a business CCTV system installed in the first place? What are the factors that determine which CCTV system is best for your premises? The following considerations should help you narrow down your security system options, whether you’re looking to install your first CCTV solution or upgrade your current one.

Defining the purpose of your CCTV system

Before you can decide on a CCTV system for your business, you need to be clear on exactly what you require from it. In previous years, security cameras were simply designed to monitor activity as stand-alone units under manual control, but today’s business CCTV cameras and systems are capable of far more.

In fact, the term ‘system’ is key; modern CCTV solutions tend to work as part of a wider security network. Security cameras and the system software that powers them can be integrated with other security applications, such as alarm management and access control. Rather than recording surveillance footage on separate storage tapes or hard drives, the data captured by today’s CCTV cameras can be merged with that from other systems in order to generate valuable operational intelligence.

So, you’ll need to consider whether you are looking for CCTV cameras to act simply as a deterrent or whether your organisation would benefit from the richer functionality of a wider CCTV system.

Regulation and legislation covering CCTV installation (including GDPR)

Business CCTV system suppliers are numerous, so how can you differentiate one company from the next? Looking for marks of independent certification is a good way to separate the best suppliers, such as that from the National Security Inspectorate (NSI).

The NSI introduced its latest update to its Code of Practice for the design, installation and maintenance of CCTV systems in May 2019 – stating that approved installers should “comprehensively assess security risks and requirements when designing CCTV systems and ensure they are fit for purpose, sustainable, functional and effective” (IFSECGlobal.com). Choosing a CCTV supplier with NSI Gold certification, like Touchstar, ensures your business will receive the highest standards of technical expertise and customer service.

There are official guidelines relating to CCTV for businesses to meet too, so it’s also important that your business CCTV system provider understands these and can advise you on them. Since the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was introduced last year, the laws surrounding personal data and its usage have become more stringent and much more defined.

For businesses, there’s been considerable focus on the kind of personal data often used for marketing purposes – email addresses, home addresses, demographic information – but, when people can be identified, images captured by CCTV also count as personal data too. This means that organisations who already have CCTV in place or are looking to install it must have a lawful basis, or ‘legitimate interest’ to do so, such as the prevention of crime for retail or warehouse businesses and/or the safeguarding of staff and visitors in schools or care homes. You may also have to display signage that informs people in surveillance areas that they are on camera. Read more on the CCTV Code of Practice from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).  

Improvements in image quality

If your organisation already has a business CCTV system with analogue security cameras but is shopping around for another, chances are at least part of the reason for upgrading is for better quality images. Older, standard-definition cameras may measure resolution in television lines (TVL) – the number of vertical lines in a square equal to the vertical height of the picture. These days, the move to pixel-based resolution has revolutionised CCTV image quality, so there’s no need to make do with poor footage or unreliable recording. 

Better yet, it’s possible to update your CCTV cameras without having to replace your entire CCTV system. By simply adding new recorders and new HD or MegaPixel cameras, capable of zooming in on minute details and internet-enabled for data integration, you can turn a set of outdated analogue CCTV cameras into part of a wider security and surveillance network. It pays to keep this in mind if you’re planning to upgrade your business CCTV system in the near future.

Speak to the experts to find the right CCTV system for your business

There are several key considerations to weigh up when sourcing a business CCTV system, but the best way to find the solution to meet your organisation’s needs is to speak to a reputable security system provider. Find out how to get in touch with our friendly team here.

 

About the Author – Lynden Jones

Lynden Jones, Managing Director

Lynden joined Touchstar ATC (formally Feedback Data) in a sales role for Access Control in 2010.  Prior to joining the company, Lynden held both Production and Account Manager roles, gaining wide technical and commercial experience within the electronics market.  

In 2013 Lynden was promoted to Sales Director and in 2017 he took overall responsibility of the business as Managing Director. As well as running Touchstar ATC, Lynden still remains extremely active in the sales and key account management aspects of the business. When not involved in the business, Lynden is a keen performance car enthusiast.